You may meet your next employer and not know it.

Couple Working in Homeless Shelter

One of the best ways to get hired is to be professional in all that you do. You never know when you will meet someone who will open doors for you. Be at your best at all times. Whether it’s waiting in line at the bank or cheering for your favorite ball team, it’s beneficial to be seen as professional.

I have seen many job searchers look like something the dog dragged in. And they are expecting to be hired. Too many times, I have looked at LinkedIn profile pictures that belong on Facebook. What truly bothers me is the outgoing message on phones of job searchers. “Not here, you know what to do”, isn’t welcoming to strangers.

Here are my suggestions that will present you as a professional.

• Appearance—you don’t want to dress in your interview outfit every time you go out of the house. But I do think that you should be showered hair clean and neat, clean-shaven, and your fingernails manicured—no broken nails or dirt underneath the nails, polish not chipped. Pajama pants and ripped jeans don’t say hire me. Be appropriately dressed for the occasion but not dirty or sloppy. Shoes should be appropriate for your outfit and in good shape.

• Act—like a professional, watch the alcohol intake, use your manners, be polite to everyone, refrain from offensive hand signals when driving. Treat everyone with kindness and respect.

• Talk—avoid gossiping, swearing, being loud and obnoxious, saying negative things about your former employer or company. Remember the magic words, please and thank you.

• Outgoing Messages—set up these messages saying your full name and ask the caller’s name and the number they can be reached at.

• Social Media–Employers will Google you at some point in your candidacy with their company.

• LinkedIn Profile Picture-post a professional head shot, a close up, of you alone against a plain background.

• Facebook—set the privacy settings as tight as you can. Even so, others can repost your posts. Keep them appropriate for your job search. Photos of you with drinks in your hand and tipsy don’t appeal to hiring managers.

• Digital dirt—do a Google search on you. See what comes up. If there is something questionable, do what you can to get rid of it. Are there people with your same name? Make sure you give prospective employers the correct spelling of your name and some other information that will identify you as you.

Today job searching is no longer limited to reading the want ads in the newspaper. Networking is the key, and it happens everywhere and anywhere. You may strike up a conversation with the person next you and it will serve you to be well-groomed and dressed neatly. Always be ready to meet your next employer or the person who knows him/her.

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